Dypsis saintelucei Beentje, Palms Madagascar : 178 (1995)

Primary tabs



  • A medium-sized, elegant palm which would probably do well in cultivation. It occurs on white sand, and so would probably do well in the drier tropics; the habitat is that of D. lutescens, one of the most successful ornamental palms (Dransfield, J. & Beentje, H. 1995: The Palms of Madagascar)A


Only known from the Sainte-Luce forest in the extreme South-East of the island. (Dransfield, J. & Beentje, H. 1995: The Palms of Madagascar)A


  • In its group of large tristichous palms with regular leaflets and ruminate endosperm closest to D. ampasindavae but distinct in the closed leaf sheath and the interfoliar inflorescence, resulting in long peduncles and very long bracts. (Dransfield, J. & Beentje, H. 1995: The Palms of Madagascar)A


  • inter species arborescentes tristichas foliolis regulariter dispositis endospermio homogeneo D. ampasindavae affinis sed vagina folii clausa et inflorescentia interfoliacea longa differt (Dransfield, J. & Beentje, H. 1995: The Palms of Madagascar)A

Biology And Ecology

  • Coastal forest on white sand; 10-20 m. (Dransfield, J. & Beentje, H. 1995: The Palms of Madagascar)A


  • Critical. Only known from a single forest, with numbers less than fifty; this is right in the middle of the area where mining operations for mineral sand (ilmenite ore) are proposed. (Dransfield, J. & Beentje, H. 1995: The Palms of Madagascar)A

Common Name

  • Not recorded (Dransfield, J. & Beentje, H. 1995: The Palms of Madagascar)A


  • Not recorded. (Dransfield, J. & Beentje, H. 1995: The Palms of Madagascar)A


  • Solitary palm (occasionally in clumps of 2-3). TRUNK 6-10 m, c. 14 cm diam.; internodes 3-5 cm long, grey, green more distally; nodal scars 1.6 cm high, whitish; wood very hard, red; crown shaft waxy green. LEAVES tristichous, 7-11 per crown, porrect, slightly arch ing distally; sheath c. 80 cm, 12 cm diam., closed, waxy pale green, smooth, with brown-tattering shoul ders; petiole absent or up to 13 cm long, 2-2.5 x 2-2.5 cm diam., channelled with sharp edges, green, glabrous; rachis 2.3-2.4 m long, proximally deeply channelled and 4 x 3 cm, more distally keeled, green, in mid-leaf 1.5-2.3 cm wide, proximally with thin grey wax or scales, distally glabrous; leaflets 59-61 on each side of the rachis, regular, stiff, pale waxy green abaxially, the proximal 116-134 (-188) x 2.2-3.5 cm (16 cm apart, the most proximal often pendulous), median 90-104 x 3-3.7 cm (interval 2.5-4 cm), distal 15-40 x 1-2.2 cm, main veins 1, only the midrib prominent on both surfaces with large distant brown ramenta, the other veins faint and with densely set small red-brown glands, apices attenuate, unequally bifid. INFLORESCENCE solitary, interfoliar at anthesis, erect within sheath, 175-225 cm, branched to 3 orders; peduncle 89 -138 cm, proximally 6-10 x 2-2.5 cm and convex abaxially, concave adaxially, distally c. 7.5 x 4 cm diam., glabrous; prophyll 100-130 cm, borne at 30-56 cm above the base of the peduncle, c. 9 cm wide, glabrous; peduncular bract 68-73 cm, closed in the distal 6 cm, beaked for c. 2 cm, inserted at 61-97 cm, abaxially pale waxy green, adaxially chestnut-brown; rachis 70-87 cm, green, glabrous, with 17 branched and 11-20 unbranched first order branches; rachillae 16-27 cm, green, glabrous, c. 5 mm diam.; triads distant, superficial, with low, rounded bract. STAMINATE FLOWERS slightly scented; sepals 1.8-2.5 x 2.2-2.9 mm, keeled, gibbous, broadly ovate, concave, the broad margins membranous; petals yellow, connate for 1-1.6 mm to the receptacle, free lobes 2.9-3.5 x 3-3.2 mm, ovate, acute, with adaxially and proximally with 2 swellings on each side of the base of the antepetalous stamen; stamens 6, uniseriate, filaments 3.8-4.4 mm long, connate at the very base for c. 0.3 mm, anthers 2.4-2.5 x 1 mm; pistillode columnar, 1.8-2.3 x 1.4-1.6 mm. PISTILLATE FLOWERS only known in bud, with sepals 2.6- 2.8 x 3.3-3.4 mm, ciliolate; petals c. 2.2 x 2.5 mm; staminodes 6, 0.4-0.6 mm; ovary asymmetrical, c. 2.3 x 2.3 mm. FRUIT not known but for seed and endocarp found under Beentje & Andriampaniry 4609; endocarp fibrous. SEED ellipsoid, 11.5-13 x 7 mm, rounded at one end, pointed at the other; endosperm deeply ruminate. (Dransfield, J. & Beentje, H. 1995: The Palms of Madagascar)A

Materials Examined

  • Tolanaro: 5km W of Manafiafy (Ste. Luce), March 1992 (ster.), Beentje & Andriampaniry 4609 (K); idem, Dec. 1992 (fl.), Beentje 4760 (Holotype K; isotypes BH, MO, P, TAN). (Dransfield, J. & Beentje, H. 1995: The Palms of Madagascar)A


    A. Dransfield, J. & Beentje, H. 1995: The Palms of Madagascar